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ANZAC Day 2009

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Geregistreerd op: 12-3-2006
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BerichtGeplaatst: 25 Apr 2009 18:28    Onderwerp: ANZAC Day 2009 Reageer met quote

We do remember them

The Cenotaph in yesterday's dawn service marking the 94th anniversary of Gallipoli. Photo / Getty Images

At the coming up of the sun, they arrived in the tens of thousands. Old and young - children in pyjamas and dressing gowns and others adorned with their grandfathers' medals. The Prime Minister was there, and so, too, was one extra special presence.

Record crowds braved cold and wet weather at Anzac Day services throughout New Zealand yesterday, and perhaps nothing summed up the resilience of the Anzac spirit more than 85-year-old Eric Brady.

"There are more and more [young people] coming every year," observed Brady at the late-morning Auckland civic service in the Domain.

The brutal beating Brady received in the carpark of the Papatoetoe RSA in February wasn't going to stop the veteran paying his respects, despite still bearing the scars - emotional and physical - of the attack, allegedly at the hands of a teenager.

"I have my good days and my bad days," says Brady of his recovery. His jaw was broken in two places and he received severe bruising in the attack. His chin has four plates in it and he can no longer wear his false teeth, self-consciously dabbing at his mouth with a tissue as he talks.

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Brady trained in Canada during World War II, then was stationed in England where he served as a navigator and bomb-aimer in Lancaster bombers.

"I think of the different people who didn't come back," he says.

Brady preferred to stay out of the public eye yesterday, not joining the veterans' parade but instead standing on the bank throughout the service, the rain holding off as people brushed past him to get a better view.

Crowd numbers were high at Anzac Day commemorations around the country, with an estimated 10,000 attending dawn services in Wellington and Christchurch, with the same if not more at the early-morning Auckland service.

RSA chief executive Stephen Clarke said New Zealanders are attending Anzac Day services in ever-increasing numbers because they are adopting a more positive attitude to what it means.

"It's great for our World War II RSA members that, in the autumn years of their lives, they get this recognition from the New Zealand public," he said.

"I always think the litmus test is that they're applauded on and off the Anzac Day parades. In decades gone by it was like a funeral procession, so we stuck our hands in our pockets and it was very solemn.

"This moves it slightly closer to the Australian observance, which has always been a bit more celebratory."

Prime Minister John Key attended the dawn service in Wellington and later in the morning led a group of New Zealand and foreign dignitaries laying wreaths at the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior at the National War Memorial. Labour leader Phil Goff attended the Auckland service, as did Mayor John Banks and Defence Minister Wayne Mapp.

"Perhaps it was because it was at Gallipoli that we encountered the very worst that war could throw at us, because we got through with honour and our humanity intact," said Key.

"Though our men came out battle-weary and horribly reduced in numbers, both New Zealand and Australia merged with a new sense of certainty about our place in the world, and a friendship that would survive for years."

Throughout the country, the Ode of Remembrance was read out. "They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old: Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morning, We will remember them."

Alice Neville
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Geregistreerd op: 12-3-2006
Berichten: 43

BerichtGeplaatst: 25 Apr 2009 18:32    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

I was there yesterday. Heb na afloop in de museum shop nog een mooi ANZAC-koekblik gescoord, gevuld uiteraard ;-) Het was moeilijk kiezen uit een rode met poppy's of een blauwe in marine-sfeer. Er lagen daar veel mooie items, ook enkele boeken over een bijzondere hond, Ceasar, ik zie dat daar nog niets over geschreven staat op dit forum, zal ik even doen op de geschikte plaats hiervoor.

Laatst aangepast door Karin op 25 Apr 2009 18:39, in totaal 1 keer bewerkt
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